This article was co-written with Shaina Scotcher.
Do you believe that the neon dress you’re wearing is making a statement? Think again. Neon has been cropping up in fashion for years, most notably in the 80s with loud leg warmers complementing oversized hair.
Don’t worry, it’s not your fault. It’s hard to be original these days. However, who can blame us for stealing key trends from the past when fashion has gone through some phenomenal changes?
Let’s take a look at the roaring 20s, named so because the of the country’s financial boom. This was also the decade that fashion unbuttoned its top collar and loosened up a bit.
Law had allowed women to finally vote, so in this relaxed climate, confidence grew and this was reflected in their wardrobes. Trousers emerged as a staple item in this era as fashion took a masculine turn, seeing haircuts shorten, as well as the hemlines.
These days, twenties fashion can be seen resurrected in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby and the ever-popular Downton Abbey. Why not tune in to either for inspiration, as it seems the high street is channelling the sophisticated and traditional look this coming Christmas. Take a tip from the twenties and follow their ‘less is more’ approach to flashing the flesh.
For your own flapper fashion, check out Miss Selfridge’s latest collection for embellished pieces and tasselled items.
It’s hard to ignore how much of an influence WWII had on forties fashion. ‘Pin up’ women were used everywhere to raise morale. Due to rationing, women opted to save the pennies and ‘create’ their own stockings, using an eye liner pencil to draw an artificial seam up the back of each leg to mimic a seam.
Hourglass figures and cinched in waists were in high demand, with fitted tea dresses and playsuits emerging as a key trend which artistically highlighted the female form. Hairstyling also became more flamboyant as victory rolls and pin curls dominated the decade.
If the forties are your forte, head to Motel online to satisfy your playsuit needs, or Primark sell seamed stockings for those of you feeling less crafty. Also, check out your nearest vintage or charity shops for affordable head or neck scarves.
This swinging era was the decade that re-wrote fashion. Loud psychedelic prints were everywhere, clothing ventured into micro-proportions with the invention of the mini-skirt and fake eyelashes fluttered into trend. PVC knee-high boots were worn to compensate the exposure of ladies pins.
Fashion wasn’t the only thing that got shaken up – hairstyling went to new lengths also. Vidal Sassoon, the iconic British hairdresser, introduced to the nation the infamous pixie crop that is still ever-present today. If you’re not comfortable going in for the chop, replicate this decade’s other key styles by backcombing your do into a beehive.
Towards the end of the decade, flower power took over and hippies set up trends for the seventies with tie-dye, bell bottom trousers and sky-high platform shoes were worn by guys and girls.
To create your own ‘groovy’ look, PVC-style items are everywhere right now. Head to shops such as Topshop or try ASOS online. A few years ago River Island re-introduced a past concession to their stores in the form of Chelsea Girl, which is wholly inspired by the sixties style.
Calvin Harris was on to something when he sang: “I’ve got love for you, if you were born in the Eighties”. Wardrobes went wild, taking inspiration from past decades and producing daring and colourful fashion that is still idolised by many today.
Films such as Fame, Footloose and Dirty Dancing hugely inspired women across the nation to wear gym wear as every day wear too. As previously mentioned, leg warmers were huge, as were stirrup leggings and high leg leotards, worn to give the impression of longer legs.
Hairstyling dictated that if you didn’t have a perm, you weren’t worth knowing in the Eighties. The love of volume was still present as well, with women going to new heights with their backcombing skills.
American Apparel stock a wide range of Eighties-style clothing but for those on a budget, most vintage shops are over spilling with genuine items from this decade.Tweet